IFDH President's Report
IFDH Takes the Lead to Bring All Groups Together
To start its 35th Anniversary activities, the IFDH organized a “Global Oral Health Summit,” featuring 10 influential, worldwide leaders and stakeholders in Oral Health. Due to the Covid-19 restrictions unfortunately, we changed to a virtual event, with a combination of prerecorded sessions and a live Roundtable session on June 26th.
The theme of the Summit was “THE FUTURE TOGETHER: Enhancing the Role of the Dental Hygienist in Oral Health and Total Health”.
The roundtable exchange of ideas and perspectives of all speakers from WHO, FDI, ACFF, EOHP, and others, can be read on the IFDH website. The full recording of the Summit Roundtable session is now available free online.
The overall results of the Summit are:
- A collaboration between all parties involved to resolve the burden of oral diseases worldwide and to achieve oral health for all by 2030.
- Implementation of the WHO Resolution on Oral Health will be our common goal. The first steps have been taken by the WHO Discussion Paper (9 August 2021) “WHO Draft Global Strategy on Oral Health”.
I do realize that, for many Dental Hygienists working in private practice and individual care, these worldwide goals and strategies are not their major or daily concern. But, as a group of over 90,000 Dental Hygienists and 30,000 Oral Health Therapists, we can make the difference.
Prevention is our core business and we all know prevention is the key answer to resolve the majority of the worldwide oral health problems!
The only thing we have to do is to discuss the problem AND the solution – PREVENTION – with our policy makers, governments, ministers of health, insurance companies etc. And, if possible, contribute in a social responsibility program to promote oral health and the prevention of oral disease, as long as the problem has not been solved and the solution, prevention and early treatment, is not incorporated in national health policies.
How Can You Help?
A very simply way to contribute is, as an organization, to endorse the ACFF Global Consensus Statement for achieving a dental cavity-free future: “We, the undersigned, join together in calling upon policy makers to consider the “Making Cavities History” policy recommendations in order that a concerted, global effort can be made to create a future free from dental cavities.”
If you, as an individual Dental Hygienist, want to learn more about how to play an active role in how to resolve these global (oral) health problems, we can offer a “Global Oral Health Module“. that aims to build and strengthen the capacity of oral health professionals to engage in decision-making at global, regional, national and local levels. If you are interested, please contact IFDH Secretary Melanie Hayes.
I sincerely hope and expect that we, as Dental Hygienists and Oral Health Therapists from all over the world, can and will, contribute to the goal of “oral health for all by 2030” and the implementation of the WHO Oral Health Resolution.